“BY GRACE YOU ARE SAVED BY FAITH” (EPH_2: 8).

I think it would be a good idea to step aside a bit to ask my reader to look affectionately at the source of our salvation, which is the grace of God. “By grace you are saved.” Because God is merciful, sinful men are forgiven, converted, purified, and saved. It is not for nothing in them, or that there may ever be in them, that they are saved; but because of the limitless love, goodness, mercy, compassion, mercy and grace of God. Think for a moment, then, of the wellhead. Take a look at the pure river of water of life that flows from the throne of God and the Lamb!

What an abyss is the grace of God! Who can measure its width? Who can understand its depth? Like all other divine attributes, it is infinite. God is full of love, because “God is love.” God is full of goodness; the very name “God” is short for “good”. Unlimited goodness and love go into the very core of Deity. Because “his mercy is eternal” that men are not destroyed; because “his compassion does not fail,” that sinners are brought to him and forgiven.

Remember this; or he may fall into error by fixing his mind so much on faith which is the channel of salvation and forgetting grace which is the source and the source even of faith itself. Faith is the work of God’s grace in us. No one can say that Jesus is the Christ except by the Holy Spirit. “No one comes to me”, says Jesus, “unless the Father who sent me brings him.” So that faith, which comes to Christ, is the result of divine attraction. Grace is the first and last moving cause of salvation; and faith, essential as it may be, is only one important part of the machinery that honors employees. We are saved “by faith,” but salvation is “by grace.” Sound those words as with the archangel’s trumpet: “By grace you are saved.” What great news for us unworthy ones!

Faith occupies the position of a channel or conduit. Grace is the source and the stream; faith is the aqueduct along which the torrent of mercy flows to refresh the thirsty souls of the people. It is very sad when the aqueduct breaks. It is a sad sight to see around Rome the many that were once great aqueducts that no longer carry water to the city, because the arches are broken and the wonderful structures are in ruins. The aqueduct must be kept intact to transmit the current; And yet, faith must be true and solid, leading directly to God and descending directly to ourselves, so that it becomes a useful channel of mercy for our souls.

Still, I remind you again that faith is only the canal or aqueduct, and not the source, and we should not look at it so much as to exalt it above the divine source of all blessings that reside in the grace of God. Never make a Christ of your faith, or think of it as the independent source of your salvation. Our life is found in “looking at Jesus”, not in our own faith. By faith all things are possible to us; However, the power is not in faith, but in the God on whom faith depends. Grace is the mighty motor, and faith is the transmission shaft by which the wheels of the soul are joined to the great motive force. The righteousness of faith is not the moral excellence of faith, but the righteousness of Jesus Christ that faith captures and appropriates. Peace within the soul is not derived from the contemplation of our own faith; but it comes to us from Him who is our peace, from whose mantle faith dominates us, and from him virtue comes out to the soul.

See then, dear friend, that the weakness of your faith does not destroy you. A shaking hand can receive a gift of gold. The Lord’s salvation can come to us even if we only have faith like a mustard seed. The power is in the grace of God and not in our faith. Great messages can be sent through thin cables, and the peacemaking witness of the Holy Spirit can reach the heart through a faith like a thread that seems almost incapable of supporting its own weight. Think more about the One whom you look at than the look itself. You must look away even from your own gaze, and see nothing but Jesus and the grace of God revealed in Him.

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